As a school assignment, I had to read a book and write a report on it. As I looked through the fiction shelf in our school library, "The Lottery Rose" really stood out. A young, abused boy slowly learning how to love and be loved, all the while a sickly rosebush reflecting his hopes, dreams, and fears. What a great idea. I mean, what could be more touching? Unfortunately, Irene Hunt pretty much ruins the whole book. She does a terrible job with the characters and the plot, the two basic components in a story. She does a good job describing Robin, the retarded boy, but that's about it. The characters are about as unrealistic as possible. The adults are either completely perfect or completely cruel, and the 7- and 8-year-old children are one-sided and talk and act like they were about twice their age. Also, the plot is unrealistic. In a period of a year or so, Georgie goes from being scared and abused to being like a normal kid his age. Irene Hunt, being a psychologist, should know better than anyone how long the healing process takes for an abused child. As a whole, this book is pretty bad. I strongly do not recommend reading this book, no matter how tempting the back cover sounds.